Thursday, August 23, 2012

Psst….Mr. CAG…there is a better way to nail the PM!

Hello Mr. CAG. While you have tried very hard, you have only managed to take the scam numbers up to a few lac crores rupees. Why, you have not even been able to reach the Rs 10 lac crore number, though you did try very hard to hit that milestone with your coal report. If only those damned PSUs could have been included! But here’s an idea whose time has come. All that it needs is the creative accounting that you have trademarked and voila….you could create an insurmountable lead in scam-creation over any other CAG in this country for decades to come! You could become the Sachin Tendulkar of Auditors! You could please your political masters like never before!

What’s it that I am talking about? What’s that idea that could have escaped your incredibly clever mind? Well I’ve written about it in the passing a few times, but then why would you read the blog of a person who is so dumb as to not even understand your high standards in accounting?! So here goes….

There is a huge loss to the exchequer – and in your usual style you could brand it corruption of the UPA! – that is taking place year after year. They call it diesel subsidy, kerosene subsidy and LPG subsidy. Why do economists use such fancy words like subsidy? That makes the loss sound almost legal and respectable. In the accounting world as you see it, there is no difference between a subsidy and an opportunity to haul the Congress’s a** over the coals! You have the Constitutional right – unquestionable even by Parliament – to call whatever you want in whichever creative way you want it! So exercise your powers and call this subsidy the corruption scandal of the century! No…of the millenium!

Of what order is this eye-popping corruption scam of the UPA? From newspaper reports, one understands that the government subsidises (“presumptive” losses in your parlance!) fuels to the extent of about Rs 1.5 lac crores per annum. Imagine…..the 2G scam that you painstakingly crafted was spread over several years. The Coalgate scam that you have recently designed so innovatively (even Steve Jobs would applaud you from his grave!) also spreads over several years. But this fuels scam – if we can call it so with your permission (or would you like to consult your political bosses before naming it?) – is worth almost the same amount in just one year. Wow! What a fantastic opportunity! Because if the exchequer is losing the money, then the UPA must be making it! It is so obvious! Why do you need to be Sherlock Holmes to figure that one out. We only need to be as creative as you are! Damn good for you too. You could say to yourself: I am so lucky I can be in the media all over again! That anchor on “Scam TV” has been pushing me for something new for so long. Poor guy, he’s losing TRPs. I have to oblige him! And this time around, the PM will have no option but to resign! Yippee! And then I can become a minister…..ooops….for that I need to first retire in 2014. Maybe its best the UPA doesn’t fall until then. So let me hold my horses till late 2013. That will be the opportune moment!

So Rs 1.5 lac crores is a big number. But its not quite Rs 10 lacs yet. So what do we do? Think, think, think! Maybe you could call your friends in the BJP. Oh yes, that Gurumurthy fellow is quite creative too! Maybe even Subramanium Swamy – he’s quite adept at crafting legal cases around nonexisting issues pretty much like you do with your audits! Maybe you can multiply this number by 8 for the past 8 years of UPA rule – that makes it….yippee! Rs 12 lac crores! That’s stupendous! This could be your Eureka moment! I can almost hear you getting into the bathtub a la Archimedes screaming: Eureka! The PM has to quit! I am a genius!

But Mr. CAG, please be a little careful. Do stop at 2004….don’t go beyond that year….that field is full of mines. Don’t even whisper about the fact that this damned fuel subsidy existed prior to the UPA. Already, you are being made to answer questions (unnecessarily) by those corrupt Congress leaders….about why you didn’t point out that coal was been “allocated” even during the NDA’s six years right before this foolish PM decided to auction them. Foolish? Yes….foolish. I mean….just imagine….if the PM hadn’t thought of auctioning the coal blocks back then, there would have been no scam at all. That would have been tragic! Thank god the UPA put up an economist as the PM. The moment he thought about it, the scam started! Who asked him to think about reforms? Really foolish! So be careful with the fuels scam – stop at 2004. That’s the condition put on your for your future posting, remember!

And of course, don’t even go anywhere near calculating the loss to the exchequer when Parliament is stalled. That’s taboo. That’s the turf of your political masters. When they come to power (as you sure hope they will!), and when the Congress is in the opposition and disrupts Parliament, you (or another brilliant CAG like you) will get the chance to do the audit then! With your genius in accounting, you could make that too into a many-lacs crore scam, but shhhh….not right now!

The real truth is that Mr. CAG, that while you have done well, you could have done better. You’ve done enough to be rated “A”, but not yet “A+”. A little more creativity….a little more (political) motivation….and you’ll get there. So I look forward to hearing more from you. And please do heed my advice! You could get the PM next time! And then the Bharat Ratna (and that ministership of course!) could be yours too!

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